Image source: Albert Sydney, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
When thinking of Trinidad and Tobago, people mostly think about its Caribbean feeling, its amazing sandy beaches with tall palm trees. Not many recall the country’s sense of responsibility. However, Trinidad & Tobago is on its way to launch a program dedicated to responsible gambling.
If we look around the world, we can see more and more countries becoming more attentive when it comes to harmful gambling. There is Gibraltar, where the Gibraltar Betting and Gaming Association just founded the Gibraltar Gambling Care Foundation. The United Kingdom is planning to set betting limits to protect its wagers. But they have many other ways to do so, like controlling online slots from the start. And now, it looks like that it is Trinidad & Tobago’s turn to make gambling responsible all around the country. It is good for the players since they will be less exposed to addiction and other harms. It is also good for online gambling sites in Trinidad & Tobago, like Intertops, since they can provide a safer space for their customers.
Online gambling in Trinidad & Tobago
The Central American island nation has an interesting jurisdiction in online wagering. According to LCB.org „even though online gambling is explicitly illegal there, tons of people play with foreign operators because of the complete lack of enforcement of the laws against gambling on the Internet.” So, there are online sportsbook sites in Trinidad & Tobago, like Intertops, you can use from its territory. Another thing is that the country is still in a transitional period on the matter. Government officials are trying to make a shift to regulating and legalizing the industry. So, we cannot know what the future hold for online gambling sites in Trinidad & Tobago. One of the outcomes of this is that there is also no licensing process in the country for operators. Another consequence is that responsible gambling in Trinidad & Tobago has never been an issue – until now.
Why they need more responsible gambling in Trinidad & Tobago
You can ask: how come that they started to deal with the topic right now? The Trinidad & Tobago National Lotteries Control Board (NLCB) announced that they will start a responsible gambling program as preparation. They are concerned that players in the country are more exposed to the harms of online gambling, like an addiction now. Because of the difficulties of the past year – people spending more time in their homes, land-based casinos closing down – they see a massive switch to online gambling. According to a recent report, they expect the online market to grow by 12% from 2019 to 2023. In numbers, it is a growth from 59 billion Trinidadian dollars to 93 billion Trinidadian dollars. This new situation calls for measures they have never considered before.
The first steps to responsible gambling in Trinidad & Tobago
The country’s legislators are mostly worried about people becoming addicted to online gambling. So, first of all, the NLBC is planning to launch a responsible gambling program. They hope it can raise awareness and also deal with the issue. Another important matter is illegal gambling activity. It is not just bad for the country’s economy, but a black market is also a place that does not really consider what is best for its customers. As Public Accounts Committee chairman, Dave Tancoo said “I don’t know if the Ministry of Finance or NLCB can take this on as a priority initiative to stop illegal gambling in this country and stop the deprivation of millions or even hundreds of millions of dollars over the years from being lost to the treasury.” Well, we can hope that his words and NLBC’s efforts will soon have some tangible results on the matter.